IBM Web Content Manager development overview
IBM Web Content Manager (WCM) is a tool which is used to manage both the content and presentation of a website. It can be used to create and publish content for stand-alone websites as well as content for Portal sites.
WCM separates out the content and the presentation layers. This allows business users to to focus on the content for a site without needing to worry about the site look and feel.
WCM supports workflow to ensure that content and designs are properly approved before they can be viewed by the end users. It also supports audit trails and version control for content and components to make it easier to manage the overall website.
The following use cases described in this wiki are developed using WCM:
This article provides a very brief overview of how to develop content and sites using WCM. It is meant to give you an overall concept. For in-depth, detail coverage on this topic, refer to the product documentation and also the following IBM Redbooks Lotus wiki publication:
There are five key concepts in WCM development, content, authoring templates, presentation templates, components, and workflow.
With WCM, content for the website is created by business users directly. To create content, you can select an authoring template reflecting the type of content that you want to create. For example, you can use News Template, and fill in the appropriate metadata fields as shown in the following example.
An authoring template is the template which defines the metadata fields for a particular content type. For example, in the News Authoring Template below, the metadata fields include 'News Title' and 'Body'.
To manage the metadata or data fields to be collected as part of an authoring template, the "Manage Elements" button is used. Metadata fields can be added, modified or removed using "Manage Elements".
Presentation templates define how a web page on a website will look (or content within a portlet when the content is delivered through Portal Server). It presents
- The look and feel for the website page
- Take content entered using the authoring template and merges the two together
For example, a presentation template controls the look and feel for the following web page, while also merging in the content as entered using the authoring template.
Presentations templates are defined using standard HTML, while active components and elements such as content metadata, images, style sheets, and other WCM components are identifiable by brackets (some are highlighted by red rectangles in the following screenshot). To insert these active components and elements, you can click the appropriate button and specify the properties for the item using the dropdown boxes. There is no coding required for these common elements.
As mentioned under presentation templates section earlier, WCM components can also be placed onto a presentation template to contribute towards the overall look and feel. There are many WCM components available including Images, Navigators and Menus. These are arranged onto a presentation template to define how the web page looks. An example of how WCM components go to form the overall web page is shown below.
A workflow is a series of stages in a business flow. During a workflow process, the content or component being workflowed is in a draft state, meaning it is not available for end users to see. Each workflow stage defines who needs to approve the content or component, before it can progress onto the next stage. Once all stages in a workflow have been approved, the content or component is published and available for the end user to view.
To summarize, the workflow ensures that the content and design element is approved by the appropriate people before it is available for access by the end users.